Dubai: A voluntary programme, organised in Hong Kong in June 2006, encouraged more than 90 per cent of shoppers to stop using plastic bags on the first Tuesday of each month.

More than 30 major supermarkets and retail chains joined the scheme.

The campaign has had phenomenal results with plastic disposed at landfills reducing by almost 10,000 tonnes in two years.

Supermarkets have brought down distribution of plastic bags by more than 80 million. China's largest plastic bag manufacturer had to stop operations because of the drive that will impose limits on the use of plastic bags starting June 1.

All these results have clearly been augmented by governmental legislations and plans, imposing stricter rules on plastic bag consumption, to help environment and save energy.

In 2007, the Ministry of Economy in Japan started a campaign to encourage people to reduce the usage of plastic bags. The campaign included a 'Best Handmade Bag' competition, for which 462 people applied. The competition included children, consumers, and retailers.